October 15, 2008

FOSS introduces portable grain analyser in Australia


FOSS in the Pacific region announces the Infratec Sofia, a grain analyser that helps farmers make informed decisions about when to harvest and how best to use the crop.


Assessing whether the crop is dry enough is one of the most critical questions during harvest. Starting too early risks rejected loads at receival or costly artificial drying. On the other hand, if farmers wait too long they can waste valuable time, pushing up costs and exposing the crop to the risk of damage from weather events.


With Infratec Sofia, farmers can accurately determine crop moisture in the paddock allowing them to start the harvest earlier and to continue longer into the day with confidence. Harvesting is completed in the shortest possible time, reducing costs and potential risks.


Measurements are simple to perform and results for parameters such as moisture and protein are delivered in around three minutes. The mobile analyzer is designed for operation in harsh Australian conditions. No grinding or sample preparation is required. Current measurement options include moisture and protein for wheat and barley.


Infratec Sofia is fully aligned and calibrated against the Infratecâ„¢ 1241 analyser that is approved by the Australian government's National Measurement Institute for use for trade purposes.


The Infratec is the official system used for payment by bulk grain handlers across Australia and around the world. Initially, Infratec Sofia is for sale in Australia only. It is distributed through CBH Group and ABB.


The company said the ability to assess the quality and characteristics of grain on-farm is becoming increasingly important for farmers as costs associated with harvesting continue to rise. Improved knowledge about grain will also empower farmers to exploit a de-regulated market by delivering exactly the right product mix for specific product requirements.


Soils and conditions can vary greatly across a paddock, resulting in grain of varying quality. The Infratec Sofia provides a fast, easy way to check the quality of grain before or during harvest. This allows farmers to make critical on-farm grain handling decisions on-the-spot instead of waiting for the receival station to give a verdict. The grain can be categorised on-farm for optimum profit, for example, with just the right protein content for feed or food use.


Infratec Sofia also assists with future cropping strategies. All results are stored on a removable memory card, so grain quality data gathered from different areas of the farm can be used for example in paddock mapping and other precision farming strategies.

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